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Ronnie Price not ready to retire or coach yet

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The Phoenix Suns coach Earl Watson has his eye on a future coach, but Price say he still wants to play.

NBA: Philadelphia 76ers at Phoenix Suns Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Career backup point guard Ronnie Price has a big fan in Phoenix Suns coach Earl Watson. Price, a free agent this summer, has now had three stints with the Suns - 2011-12, 2015-16 and spring 2017.

The Suns wanted to re-sign Price last summer after his one-year deal expired, but he inexplicably got a guaranteed multi-year deal from the Oklahoma City Thunder before later getting cut before the regular season started.

When he was released, Suns coach Earl Watson said he would love Price to become a coach and had a place for him on the Suns coaching staff when Ronnie was ready.

Price, buffeted by a two-year guaranteed contract through next season, does not need to make any life-changing decisions yet. He held out for an NBA job and eventually spent the second half of the season with Watson’s Suns. Even this summer, he looks for another chance at playing without worrying about paying the bills.

And playing is exactly what he wants to do.

“As far as putting a cap on my career,” Price told media after the season ended. “l never even really thought about that. I approach this summer the same way. I think once the drive and motivation isn’t there mentally, then maybe I’ll have an answer for you.

“But mentally, I’m still hungry to get better this summer. Physically I’m in great shape.”

Meanwhile, Watson gave Price a chance to play this spring so he can show NBA GMs he still has game.

And probably also to remind Price he has a home in Phoenix whenever he is ready to start coaching.